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Volunteers set to clean northwest Ohio waterways Saturday

More than 600 volunteers have signed up for the 26th annual "Clean Your Streams" event, which collects thousands of trash every year

MAUMEE, Ohio — Clean water is an important issue for many people in northwest Ohio. This weekend, hundreds of volunteers will roll up their sleeves to make our waterways a little bit cleaner.

This Saturday is the 26th annual Clean Your Streams event. The clean up happens every September and this weekend, more than 600 volunteers are set to help. They will walk along stream banks and throughout local parks to clean up debris and other garbage.

"Trash in the waterways is really bad in the wildlife! So sometimes we find entangled snakes or fish or turtles and we want to get it out of the waters for the wildlife and for people to enjoy the waters," said Kris Patterson, Executive Director of Partners for Clean Streams.

Last year, volunteers collected nearly 4,000 food wrappers and cigarette buds, along with nearly 3,000 plastic pottles. 

Clean your streams collects data on everything their volunteers pick up, some of which is more harmful for waterways and marine life. It's not just limited to small items and pieces of trash.

"It's usually a lot of floating debris, like plastic bottles or plastic bags, food wrappers, sometimes even big things! Like washing machines or hot water heaters or sewing machines," said Patterson.

While registration is closed for this year's event, organizers can connect anyone with free clean up equipment if they'd like to help out on their own time. To request equipment or organize a clean up, click here.

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